Thursday 15 September 2022



As the upgrade and replacement continues, next on the roster is Trailbreaker. I was late to the table with this one as I’m a fan of Mastermind Creations Terraegis. But with my Masterpiece collection slowly starting to become more cartoon orientated in aesthetic, I decided to put my hand in my pocket.
Trailbreaker has been a well liked character by myself, mainly down to his appearances in the cartoon. From memory, I don’t recall him being very prominent in the US or UK Marvel comics, spending most of his time if I’m right, deactivated in Ratchet’s repair bay. In fact, taking a quick look now at his Tech Spec, we appear to share one or two traits in common. An Autobot other than Grimlock I can relate to, who’d have thought?
Let’s see how Outrider gets on shall we.

Box & Accessories

I have no issue with the box quality, it’s sturdy, glossy and printed well. Again, as per Fans Toys, the figure inside is entombed in polystyrene. Where I do take a slight issue is with the actual appearance of the box itself and the details upon it. In a break from the usual, this box has no outward indications that it is a Fans Toys product. No character artwork, no branding and the text on rear of box is for Tesla! (the same issue blights the bio-card, which has the data for Rig). If I was to hazard a guess as to why, I’d say it’s more than likely down to Takara and their MP-56 Trailbreaker, being that they were both released not too far apart. Maybe the same is true for ‘Robot Paradise’?
But anyway, an irrelevant collectors card, instruction booklet and a small selection of accessories. These accessories comprise of a blaster, a radar dish, a spare hand and 3 extra expressive faces (two of which I think are identical). To swap out the spare hand you will need a small screwdriver, not included.
N.B. Since I began writing this review I have seen an “after purchase” box option. A 3rd Party retailer is doing a set of 2 stickers, one for the box face and one for the rear. However, £39.00 plus postage, it’s very expensive and maybe just for those that are really bothered about it.

Vehicle Mode

Vehicle mode is quite a boxy affair more akin to a Volvo that a real world Toyota Hi-Lux, a mode which Mastermind Creations nailed. However Outrider does fall in line with his animation alt-mode look, which is what is important here as this is the style being pursued currently. It’s a solid mode with no panel gaps or mis-alignments, nicely painted with reasonable detailing. Almost every inch of this figure is painted and the one I have to hand has zero blemishes or bad spots. Rubber tyres and translucent plastic enhance the overall aesthetic making this a really good looking alt mode. Outrider rolls well on his wheels and the doors open for effect, but this is more to do with transformational sequence than actual play or design feature. The only thing I would make mention of in a slight negative way are the door mirrors. Both the G1 toy and animation model omitted these, the prior for more obvious reasons than the latter. So it strikes me as an odd choice that Fans Toys made to include them here. Later I’ll touch on how I feel they are a hinderance in robot mode.

Robot Mode

Who is this tall dark stranger? No doubt, Outrider cuts a tall mean and lean silhouette, resplendent in his just slightly darker than gun metal paint job. I’d say it’s black with a white fleck/pearlescent myself but my eyes are buggered so it’s open to debate. Just to repeat a point from earlier, this figure is painted excellently. No one blemish or bad spot, just about every inch is covered. Fans Toys have done a bang on job of getting all the key elements from his cartoon look to translate well on this figure. In this mode I have two quibbles, one I mentioned earlier. Firstly it’s the door mirrors, they just hang there on the back of the doors getting in the way. They can at times hamper the shoulder articulation, and its entirely possible that in certain circumstances they could be snapped off. Hopefully this will be avoided but it’s a possibility. The second issue is his gun arm. The ‘gun’ part I feel is entirely too short. In fact I must confess here as upon my initial transformation I did something I have never done prior, I broke something! The gun hose end if you will, was over stiff and when I pulled it, it came out and one of the tabs to hold it in place snapped off. So, after a moment or two of stunned silence, with a rather vocal internal tirade, I regrouped and cracked on. Personally I would’ve made the gun an attachment rather than a swap out feature as it is now (screwdriver is required). It could have easily have been moulded and pegged into the rear of the left hand. But it’s not, and it’s short so you can transform him and I still broke the bloody thing.
Anyway, my misfortune aside, on with things.
Outrider has great articulation, some minor limitations but most key poses can be attained well enough. The generous ab-crunch allows for effective sitting poses which most other figures cannot do. All accessories bar the radar dish can be utilised in robot mode, some with the use of a screwdriver. I did note that his gun looked familiar, I hadn’t recalled seeing him use one in the cartoon so I looked to my other Masterpiece figures. And sure enough I found a match in both Takara Bumblebee and Ironhide/Ratchet, naughty Fans Toys.  So overall a great robot mode that looks and feels the part and also scales well with other Masterpiece figures.

Closing Thoughts

Whether you are a fan or not, you cannot deny that Fans Toys do release good quality product most of the time. I have strong thoughts on Hoodlum but this is neither the time nor place. I wouldn’t class myself as a ‘Fans Toys Fan Boy’ of which there are many out there, but I do appreciate their product and quality, and Outrider is no exception to this. A hefty figure with solid materials, great paint job and good articulation. I cannot comment as to how he compares with Takara’s offering, all I will say is that if Takara’s version is anything like their Hound then by weight alone will give you some indications of how they differ. I’m not saying Hound is a bad figure mind you, most certainly not, but the lack of die-cast and other premium materials makes it feel a lesser product. I can and will compare it to Mastermind Creations Terraegis though. Being totally objective I have to say that Outrider is a better rendition of Trailbreaker than Terraegis. The materials used and paint application alone outperform the latter, not to mention the sturdiness of it all, although the articulation is just about on a par. Does this mean that I will be moving Terraegis on to the care of another, as is my current aim of upgrading and replacing? Not bloody likely!

Yes, Outrider is a better figure but Terraegis is still my favourite. Outrider achieves a goal on my shelf in line with the other figures of my collection, but Terraegis has a more personal connection. I won’t go too far into it as I intend on revisiting the MMC figures as part of my “Vaults of Iacon Re-Issued” line of reviews. Suffice to say, Terraegis connects to a feeling and not a place on my shelf.
So, that’s my thoughts on Outrider.

Outrider was purchased from Show.Z, the link to which can be found in our 'Recommended Sites' section.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by and catch you all soon.

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